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Green Building Initiative -- ROI for business

Green building for commercial construction has reached the pay-off tipping point. It pays to be green!

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Green Buildings are High Performance Development

Why green buildings for business? It's simple. There are no downsides. Green buildings are not just something you do to improve nature -- they affect everyday business bottom lines. Here's how. High-performance, commercial buildings are energy-efficient, minimize pollution and reduce overall environmental impact. They require less maintenance, reduce short- and long-term costs, promote health among occupants and improve worker satisfaction. Many also include visual or cultural aspects designed to further enrich their communities.

Green buildings are better for the environment. But what's becoming more and more apparent is that they're better for the bottom line. Energy-efficiency is one reason, but greater workforce productivity is proving to have an even more significant effect on company profits.

Green Buildings are Cleaner, Fresher, and More Natural

Simply put, green buildings are cleaner, fresher and take advantage of natural lighting. They often establish a connection to nature. They're more comfortable and offer healthful amenities such as gyms, casual meeting rooms and colorful dining areas.

Indoor Air Quality Saves Billions in Lost Sick Time

A study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that improving indoor air quality could save U.S. businesses up to $58 billion in lost sick time each year, with another $200 billion earned in increased worker performance.

Effective Green Development Strategy

At the heart of high performance commercial building is the need to integrate "green" parameters at all stages of development—from concept and design through construction and move-in. Successful implementation depends, in large measure, on establishing standards and then auditing those standards throughout the build.

In addition to the satisfaction of contributing toward a better environment, a healthier workplace and an improved community, commercial structures that are built green often bring financial rewards.

Cash Incentives by Utility Companies and States

Utility companies often give cash incentives to encourage energy and water efficiency, and different levels of government offer tax, financial and other incentives such as fast-tracking the building approval process. The State of California, for example, offers up to $300,000 per project to spur the construction of high-performance non-residential buildings. Many cities also offer tax incentives for energy efficient buildings. And the federal government offers a 10% tax credit for commercial solar applications.
Building green and retrofitting buildings and campus facilities adds up to a win-win situation.

For more information on federal programs contact the U.S. Department of Energy.

Green Building Initiative
The Green Building Initiative
2104 SE Morrison
Portland, Oregon 97214
Phone: 877.GBI.GBI1
Fax: 503.961.8991

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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